Miami, FL (July, 2006) — Camillo Ricordi, M.D., scientific director and chief academic officer of the Diabetes Research Institute (DRI) at the University of Miami, will receive The Transplantation Society – Roche Award for Outstanding Achievement in Transplantation Science (Clinical.) on July 26 in Boston. The award will be presented during the World Transplant Congress, the largest biennial international transplant event. This year’s meeting, for the first time, will bring together The Transplantation Society, the American Society of Transplant Surgeons and the American Society of Transplantation.
The Transplantation Society’s recognition awards are given to a recipient who has made outstanding contributions in transplantation. Dr. Ricordi’s research objective is to develop a cure for type 1 diabetes. He is known for pioneering techniques for the isolation of insulin producing cells from the pancreas, which are now used worldwide and for performing the first successful series of human islet allotransplants.
“I am deeply honored by this international recognition, whose credit goes to the outstanding team of scientists, physicians, surgeons, staff and patients of the Diabetes Research Institute and the Transplant Program at the University of Miami, together with the many collaborators of the Diabetes Research Institute Federation worldwide who have made our progress as a team possible”, explains Dr. Ricordi, “and I am deeply grateful to the NIH, the JDRF, the ADA, and especially the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation (DRIF), without whose support our translational research work would not have been possible”.
In islet transplantation, islet cells are extracted from the pancreas of a deceased donor and infused into the recipient through the portal vein of the liver. In successful transplants, the cells lodge in the liver’s small blood vessels and begin producing insulin, freeing patients from the need to inject insulin several times a day. The procedure is seen as having the most potential as a treatment for type 1 diabetes.
In addition to his role at the Diabetes Research Institute, Ricordi is also the Stacy Joy Goodman Professor of Surgery and Chief of the Division of Cellular Transplantation. Previous honors and awards include the 2001 World Prize of surgery from the University of Geneva, and the 2002 Outstanding Scientific Achievement Award from the American Diabetes Association Congress.
Ricordi has also authored more than 500 scientific publications and holds several patents in the field of cellular transplantation. He is founder and president of the Cell Transplant Society and the International Pancreas and Islet Transplant Association.
In addition, he serves on several National Institutes of Health expert panels, strategic planning committees, and is chairperson of the NIH Clinical Islet Transplant Consortium. Ricordi is also president of the Board of the Mediterranean Institute for Transplantation and Advanced Therapies in Palermo, Italy.
Mitra Zehtab, M.D.
Chief Operating Officer